DISCOVER THE MIGHT AND MINISTRY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
Believers today have vastly underestimated the power of the Holy Spirit.
You may wonder how I can be so sure of that. It’s simple, really. If we truly understood and believed what the Bible tells us about Him, we would never worry about anything again. All hell has to offer could come against us and we wouldn’t fear. We’d just grin and say, “Bring it on, devil! The Greater One lives within me and He has given me all the wisdom, strength, power and provision I need to crush you like a bug.”
Right now you may think you could never have that kind of boldness. But let me ask you something: What would you do if Jesus appeared to you today? How would you act if He linked His arm in yours and told you that from now on, He would be physically present with you in every situation. If you became sick, He would lay His hand on you and you’d be healed. If you ran short of money, He’d pray and multiply your resources. If you encountered a problem you didn’t know how to handle, He’d tell you exactly what to do.
Under those circumstances, you’d be very bold and confident, wouldn’t you? Every time you ran into trouble, you’d just glance over at Jesus standing next to you and suddenly, you’d have great courage.
Of course, there’s one problem. The fact is, you don’t have that advantage. You don’t have Jesus standing next to you in the flesh taking care of your every need.
But you do have something better.
I realize it’s difficult to believe there’s anything more beneficial than Jesus’ physical presence. But there is. Jesus said so Himself.
That’s right. In the hours just before He was crucified, He told His disciples that He would be leaving them and returning to His Father in heaven. When they expressed their sorrow and dismay, He said:
I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you…. I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you (John 14:16-17, 16:7).
To fully grasp the impact of this last statement, you have to realize that Jesus was talking to a group of men who had followed Him day and night for three years. They had seen His miracles. They had enjoyed perfect protection and provision at His hand.
Peter was sitting there among them. Can’t you just imagine what was running through his mind? No doubt he was thinking of the first time Jesus had borrowed his boat. After He’d finished preaching from it, He’d said to Peter, “Grab your nets and we’ll go catch us some fish.” It was the middle of the day. Peter knew you couldn’t catch fish in the daylight in that lake—the water was too clear. The fish would see the net and run from it.
But just to humor Him, Peter had done what Jesus said and ended up with a net-busting, boat-sinking load of fish. What a day!
Then there was the time Jesus healed Peter’s mother-in-law of a deadly fever. Cured her instantly!
Even that didn’t hold a candle to what happened on the Mount of Transfiguration. That day Peter had actually seen Moses and Elijah talking with Jesus. He had watched His body transfigure before his very eyes. He’d seen the shining cloud of glory and heard the awesome voice of Almighty God!
As those events passed through Peter’s mind, he must have wondered, How can it possibly be expedient or to my advantage for Jesus to go away?
Knowing that question was in the heart of every one of His disciples, Jesus said, in essence, “I know this is hard for you to believe, but trust Me on this. I’m not lying to you. It’s better for you if I go away so that I can send the Holy Spirit to not only be with you, but to be in you!”
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THE MUSCLE OF GOD
It’s been almost 2,000 years since Jesus said that and most of us are still struggling to fully believe it.
Theologically, we know it’s true, and we thank God that we’re born again and baptized in the Holy Ghost. But then we open our mouths and say things like, “If I could just feel Jesus’ hand on my fevered brow, it would be easier for me to receive my healing.”
Why is that?
I believe it’s because we haven’t truly appreciated the might and the ministry of the Holy Spirit. We haven’t yet had a full revelation of who this is that is living inside us.
Many Christians, for example, seem to think the first time the Holy Spirit did much of anything was on the Day of Pentecost. But that’s not true. The Holy Spirit has been at work on this planet ever since the beginning. Look at the Book of Genesis and you can see that for yourself. There in the first few verses we find: “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light” (Genesis 1:1-3).
Think about that! The Holy Spirit was hovering, waiting to create. Then the moment God spoke the Word, “Light be!” (literal Hebrew translation), the Spirit sprung into action and slung this universe into being.
That’s how the Bible introduces us to the Holy Spirit!
You see, the Holy Spirit is the muscle of God. Every time you see God’s power in manifestation, you can be sure the Holy Spirit is on the scene.
When the Holy Spirit came on Samson, he single-handedly killed a thousand Philistine soldiers (see Judges 15:14-16). Can you imagine how embarrassing that must have been for the Philistines who escaped? They probably went running back to headquarters all beat up and breathless with the story of this terrible massacre. I can almost hear their commander’s response.
“A thousand men killed? A thousand? That’s awful! How many Israelites were you up against?”
“Uh, well, sir…actually just one.”
Some people get the idea that Samson was able to do those great exploits because he was a giant of a man. But he was really just an ordinary fellow. He only became extraordinary when the Spirit of God came on him.
The prophet Elijah was the same way. On his own, he was just as normal as you and me. He was once so frightened by the threats of a woman that he hid in the wilderness and asked God to kill him so he wouldn’t have to face her.
But when the Holy Spirit came on him, Elijah was a powerhouse. He once called down fire from heaven, killed 400 prophets of Baal, and outran the king’s chariot (drawn, no doubt, by the fastest horses in the nation of Israel). And he did it all in one day (see I Kings 18-19).
WHAT A MIND!
Don’t get the idea from those examples, however, that the Holy Spirit is simply a mindless source of raw power. Far from it! When He moves in on a situation, He does it with wisdom and understanding so vast that it staggers the human mind.
Isaiah 40:13 says of Him: “Who hath directed the spirit of the Lord, or being his counsellor hath taught him?” Now go back and read how verse 12 further explains: “Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, and meted out heaven with the span, and comprehended the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the mountains in scales, and the hills in a balance?”
Consider for a moment what kind of mind could take a handful of water, weigh it and then compute all the moisture changes of the earth that would take place over untold thousands of years. What kind of mind could take a handful of dust, weigh it, and then figure out how to form the earth—mountains and all—in such a way that it would always stay in perfect balance?
That’s the kind of mind the Spirit of God has!
When He put this earth together, He did it so perfectly that it can travel 1,000 miles an hour in one direction and 10,000 miles an hour in another, both at the same time, without ever getting the slightest degree off course. He constructed it so that it could compensate for all the movement of the tides and all the use and abuse it would receive at the hands of man and still make its way through the heavens exactly on time.
Listen, that is the One who is planning your life! That is the One who dwells within you and walks within you. When you join yourself to the Lord, you become one spirit with Him (I Corinthians 6:17). And He doesn’t change or shrink up His abilities so He could fit them inside you.
No, if you’re a born-again, Holy Spirit-baptized believer, He is everything in you that He has ever been. He has the same awesome power. He has the same astounding ability to compute, to comprehend and plan in infinite detail everything that has ever been…everything that now is…and everything that ever will be!
What’s more, when you run into something you can’t handle and you call on Him for help, He’s not a million light years away. He’s right there inside you! He’s ready to supply you with whatever you need. He’s ready to be your comforter. Ready to be your teacher and your trainer. Ready to be your advocate, your standby, your counselor. He’s ready to put His supernatural muscle and mind to work for you 24 hours a day.
THE PERFECT GENTLEMEN
“Well then, why hasn’t He helped me before now?” you ask. “Heaven knows I’ve needed it!”
He’s been waiting for you to give Him something He can work with. He’s been waiting there inside you just like He hovered over the face of the waters in Genesis, waiting for you to speak the Word of God in faith.
That’s been His role since the beginning—to move on God’s Word and deliver the power necessary to cause that Word to manifest in the earth. That’s what He did at creation…and that’s what He is commissioned to do for you.
But remember, He’s your helper, not your dominator. If you’re walking around talking doubt, unbelief and other worthless junk, He is severely limited. He won’t slap His hand over your mouth and say, “You dummy, I don’t care what you say, I’m going to bless you anyway.”
No, the Holy Spirit is the perfect gentleman. He’ll never force anything on you. He’ll just wait quietly for you to open the door for Him to work.
So decide right now to start opening that door. Develop an awareness of the reality of the Holy Spirit within you. Stop spending all your time meditating on the problems you’re facing and start spending it meditating on the power of the One inside you who can solve the problems. In other words, start becoming more God-inside minded!
Do you know what will happen if you do that? All heaven will break loose in your life.
Instead of walking around moaning about how broke you are and how you can’t afford to give much to spread the gospel, you’ll start thinking about the fact that the One with the power to bring God’s Word to pass is living inside you, and you’ll change your tune. You’ll start saying things like, “God meets my needs according to His riches in glory, so I have plenty to meet my own needs and give to every good work!”
Then the Holy Spirit within you will go into action. He’ll give you plans, ideas and inventions. He’ll open doors of opportunity and then give you the strength and ability to walk through them.
Instead of sitting around wishing there was something you could do for your sick, unsaved neighbor, you’ll march into his house, tell him about Jesus, and then lay hands on him fully expecting the Holy Spirit within you to release God’s healing power and cause him to recover.
Instead of sitting around simply admiring the works of Jesus and reading about them each Sunday in church, you’d hit the streets and do those works yourself—and even greater works (see John 14:12). You’ll stand up boldly and say:
The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord (Luke 4:18-19).
MORE THAN YOU CAN THINK
“Wait a minute, Brother Copeland. Jesus spoke those words about Himself!”
Yes, He did. But He also said, “…As my Father hath sent me, even so send I you” (John 20:21).
You’ve been sent just like Jesus was. You’ve been sent to your family, your neighborhood, your workplace, your world to deliver the burden-removing, yoke-destroying power of God!
That’s the reason God baptized you in the Holy Spirit. He intended for you to walk into a place and bring the power of God on the scene—the same power that enabled Samson to defeat the Philistines and make a fool out of the devil! The same power that enabled Elijah to call down fire from heaven and outrun the fastest horses in the country! The same power that enabled Jesus to heal the sick, raise the dead and calm the sea!
Can you imagine what all God could do in this earth if we’d just become God-inside minded enough to let that power flow?
No, you can’t. For as the Apostle Paul said, He is “able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us” (Ephesians 3:20).
Maybe you’ve been waiting for God to do something in your life or in the lives of those around you. Maybe you’ve been saying, “I know God is able to change this situation. I wonder why He doesn’t do it?” If so, read that last phrase again. It says He is able to do above what we can ask or think according to the power that worketh in you!
Start building your faith in that power. Instead of always gazing toward heaven saying, “God, why don’t You help me?” look at yourself in the mirror and say, “The Spirit of God is living in me today and I expect Him to do wise, wonderful, amazing and miraculous things through me!”
Instead of meditating on your problems and natural inadequacies, get out your Bible and study the acts of the Holy Spirit from Genesis to Revelation. Start meditating on the power and sufficiency of the Greater One who lives and walks within you every moment of every day.
When you begin to realize what a dynamite team you two really are, you’ll blast off into the realm of exceedingly above all that you can ask or think…and the devil will never be able to catch you.
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